CDC's Adolescent and School Health Work Improves Health and Saves Money
U.S. high school-aged students:
- 40% report having ever had sex
- One-quarter of all chlamydia cases – and 4 percent of new HIV infections – occurred among youth aged 13-19 in 2017
- Nearly 1 in 5 report being bullied at school
- Lesbian, gay, or bisexual students are twice as likely to be bullied and more likely to have experienced violence
- 1 in 7 report misusing prescription opioids, which can lead to overdose, injection drug use, and increased risk for HIV and viral hepatitis
In the U.S., schools have a unique opportunity for population-level impact through their direct contact with millions of students
- Quality HIV and STD prevention education helps youth make healthier choices.
- From 2015 to 2017, schools within CDC funded local education agencies saw statistically significant declines in the percentage of students who ever had sex (40.8% to 37.1%), were currently sexually active (26 % to 23.8%) or had four or more lifetime sexual partners (12% to 10 %).
- Youth are less likely to receive recommended preventive health services than adults and often face unique barriers to accessing sexual health services.
- From 2014-2018, CDC-funded districts made more than 65,000 referrals to youth-friendly providers for key health services.
- Helping young people feel engaged and cared for at home and at school — also called connectedness — may have substantial health benefits that last well beyond their teenage years.
- In one CDC study, higher levels of teen connectedness were associated with as much as a 66% lower risk in areas of mental health, violence, sexual risks, and substance use.
- CDC-funded programs prevent risk for HIV and other STDs for less than $10 per student
- CDC funding connects close to 8% of the 26 million middle and high school students nationwide to quality health education, health services, and safe and supportive school environments:
- From 2014-2018, funded local education agencies increased the proportion of schools that implemented quality sexual health education programs from 61% to 88% in middle schools and from 83% to 93% in high schools.
- School-based HIV/STD prevention programs are cost-effective.
- One study found that $1 invested in school-based HIV & STD prevention efforts saved $2.65 in medical and social costs.
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